Tuesday, August 30

Planking VS. Owling

As I think you all know, planking has become a sport of choice to hipsters and humans alike when faced with a flat surface, a camera, and nothing to do. However, sometimes people get the idea in their head to plank on less-than-flat surfaces, like these folks here:

So nice, it could be a post card.

That just doesn't look comfortable, or hygienic.

 This girl isn't even planking well. And she's wearing Uggs on an obvi warm day. This shows how far planking has invaded society.

And yet, despite all the planking that has been occurring, there has been another phenomenon sweeping youth culture and the nation called Owling. Here, take a look:

Spidey does it like no other.

Because who respects any aspect of Canada, right?

Even Ewatz does it, and we all know how I feel about her.

So, we are now faced with a decision. Take your pick. Planking or Owling. But whichever you choose, just remember that Emma Watson loves people that Owl, and that if you're planking, don't wear Uggs at the same time.


Sunday, August 28

Usain Bolt DQs

In 2010 the rule on false starts in track were changed to a "one and done" rule. One false start and you are DQ'd. Usain Bolt jumped the gun today at the IAAF World Championships, you can see it at 1:05 real good, and ended his three year strangehold on the 100m dash. The IAAF will definitely have to change this before the Olympics. Let them try as many times as it takes to get Usain Bolt in the race, he is the best Olympics t.v. next to Michael Phelps.

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Vinny Pumps Up his Kicks

Vinny from the Jersey Shore is the luckiest guy in the world.

The cast of the Jersey Shore is pretty easy to break down. The Situation is a character same as Ronny, the muscley doofus. J-Woww used to be a fox and Snooki is a delightful mess. DJ Pauly D has a tanning bed in his house, his blowout hasn't moved for five seasons. Angelina and Sammi are real,,, real annoying. Angelina may have been the only Italian in the house other than Vinny. Deena came later and peaks every episode in the opening when she asks if we "like the boobs?"

Vinny got super lucky. He is not a character and he doesn't have a blowout. The word on the street about Vinny is that he won DJ Pauly D away from the Situation, wears Young and Reckless shirts, smiles almost constantly and direct from Snooki, he has a horsedick. Vinny is by far the most fun cast mate, DJ Pauly D obviously is my second favorite and even his beard is better looking than Ron. Vinny seems to be enjoying himself more than anyone else.

And not only when he is on the show. It seems that sometimes he gets together with his cousins and puts on a dance show. Watch out for when a cousinette in pink walks off screen to talk with her mom for a second.

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Darth Vader Gargoyle

On the North West tower of the Washington National Cathedral there is a Darth Vader Gargoyle. The Cathedral did get messed up by the DC Earthquake, Darth Vader made it out fine though.

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Saturday, August 27

Gollum is precious...to me

Alright, I know some people hate on Gollum. MikePirog is NOT a big fan, finds him gross and thinks he's a more successful Jar Jar Binks. But allow me to tell you why i LOVE THE CRAP out of Gollum.

One night while I was walking home from Vocal Suspects practice, it was raining and damn dark and I was going from Herder to Orchard Hill (if you don't speak UMass, it was a decent distance considering it was near 11PM). I was spooked to begin with because I'm a total pussy, but then one of the trees in Haigis Hall starting rattling CRAZILY and I heard Gollum whispering, "precious....so juicy sweet..." Before I could whimper in nervousness, a dude jumps out of the tree and says, ""HAHAH, Hey, I'm just messing with you, my name's Sean."

It was an amazing freshman year kind of friendship that was fierce and then died away slowly. And his impression of Gollum was SO good. One night, we made a slideshow of images of Gollum set to the song "Foolish Games" by Jewel. I pissed my twin extra long sheets I laughed so hard.

(Gollum with Precious)

Then, before Photoshop was readily available, we would take images of Gollum and put him in funny locations (Hampshire Mall, my graduation party, the White House). We had no idea that others around the globe were doing the same thing. What I'm trying to say is that Gollum's appeal is that he is so pitiful and goofy that he can make anyone say, "What the fuck?"

So, if I were to re-create that amazing slideshow, here are the pics I'd use. (I made none of these)

p.s. when my husband wants to mess with me, he wakes me up in Gollum's voice. Its scary, trust me.

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In Time Justin Timberlake Will Take Over the World

Justin Timberlake is starring in a new movie In Time that takes place in the future where time takes the place of money as currency and no one ages past the age of 25 in looks. That means that the whole movie is filled with gorgeous people. Amanda Seyfried is in it as a red head. It looks pretty good. Justin tries out the action hero role and he might just be putting Tom Cruise out of a job.

Check it out

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Shark in the Street!

No, not really. Its totally fake.It might be the best picture from Hurricane Irene though. Its not better than the picture from the Washington Earthquake though.
amateur meteorologist
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Wednesday, August 24

Save Pluto

On January 19, 2006 New Horizons the NASA robotic discovery laboratory spacecraft was launched at the planet Pluto. New Horizons will be as close to Pluto as its going to get on July 14,  2015. The plan is to turn on the science five months before the closest New Horizons will get to Pluto.

On August 24, 2006 the International Astronomical Union (IAU), Mother Fuckers, decided they hated everyone and declared Pluto was no longer a planet. This accomplished nothing and wrecked the mnemonic planet thing.  My Very Excellent Mother Just Served Us Nine Pizzas became My Very Excellent Mother Just Served Us Nothing, the IAU suck.

If  the IAU had waited for New Horizons to be five months away from Pluto and had revved up the science and realized that Pluto was in no way at all like any other planet even a little bit things would be different. Because that was the plan, to go out where nobody had gone before and learn a bunch of new and interesting things about Pluto. Mother Fuckers jumped the gun.

Pluto is a planet until at least Valentine's Day 2015.

Also, if anything let's loosen up the definition of a planet. We should have Ceres, Eris, and Makemake. We should add them because it is better to have a planet named Makemake.

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Tuesday, August 23

Posters for Drugs

I was laughing my face off when I saw these the first time.

Theres a few more too.
-jv, poster enthusiast 

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Thursday, August 18

Bears Are Monsters

Thats a shaved bear. Also if you ever wanted to know what a very determined monster looked like it covers that too. Look at those fucking claws. 
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You should be following @mental_floss

@mental_floss is constantly tweeting amazing facts that I haven't ever read before. @mental_floss recently blew my mind by telling me that one in every thirty million lobsters is yellow. 
If that isn't enough to get you following @mental_floss I think these three facts will.

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Gertrude Stein

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On my recent trip to San Francisco I visited SFMoMA  and toured the private collection of Gertrude Stein which was on special exhibit. I am now convinced that living as an ex-pat in Paris with one's lover, eating good food, drinking good wine, schmoozing with Picasso, Matisse, Cezanne, and Hemingway is the life. I aspire to be Gertrude Stein. baller.


Monday, August 15

Extreme Sushi

Do you like sushi? I do
I really like my sushi served on a miniature wooden boat

Some people can't deal with eating raw fish and go for the cucumber roll. I think that's pussy. I just giggled at myself for typing that out loud. If you think you like sushi and you only eat cucumber and imitation crab meat then whatever. I can't wait any longer-this is the most frightening thing I've seen all day.

What you're looking at here is a full on dead squid that zombies out when you pour apparently evil soy sauce on it. #THATSHITAINTRIGHT

Soy sauce hasn't been so lethal since it made ROW get nine stitches in his toe. I suggest we all move underground and start a safer society there Hunger Games style before theses creepy squid bastards get too out of hand.


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Are You Rich?

Not sure if you are a wealthy millionaire?

Here is a quick way to tell. Fish through the stacks of hundred dollar bills in your wallet. Did you find one of those weird ones that doesn't have any zeros on it? if you did and you know what that thing is: then you are not a rich millionaire, continue buying scratch tickets.

go ahead and check.

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Sunday, August 14

Minimalist Fairytale Posters

Like id's post about Poe books with new awesome covers these fairytale posters are sweet and simple. My favorite is the 3 Little Pigs, if you wanna see more theres a whole collection to check out.

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Even More Exciting British News

The UK is exciting, especially these last couple weeks. Posh and Becks added beautiful daughter Harper Seven to their unfairly good looking family and The News of the World put out its last issue on July 10th. Hugh Grant took down News of the World. On July 28th the Opening Ceremony of the 2012 Summer Olympics in London were a year away, as of today we are 348 out. The London Riots started on August 6th following a march protesting the death of Mark Duggan. Austin Powers 4 was announced on August 12th, yeah baby.

This is the best picture from the London Riots. A hooligan trying to kick a Bobbie in the Johnson.
This picture from the London Riots is crazy.
British Admirer


Fuck Watch the Throne.

OK, Just kidding.  It's good and I know you're probably all listening to it.  There are some great tracks (My favorites are "Who Gon Stop Me" and "Why I Love You"), and the production value is outstanding.  Although it's not as good as either Jay or Ye's most recent solo projects.

But there was a rap duet album that dropped earlier this summer with much less masturbatory hype.

Hell: The Sequel is by Eminem and Royce da 5'9," who call themselves Bad Meets Evil.  I have never listened to Royce before this, probably because his name is fucking retarded, but apparently he is an awesome rapper. 

More importantly, this is the best thing Eminem has done since 2002.  His past few solo albums haven't been nearly as good as the pantheon records that he was dropping when we were teenagers.  The Slim Shady LP was a game-changer and The Marshall Mathers LP and The Eminem Show are two of the best rap records ever released.  Remember that Eminem?  With the scathing lyrics, mind-blowing flow, and complete irreverence for social taboos?  He's back:

That's some classic Em right there.  Who else would rap about having anal sex with Nicki Minaj?  Yes, apologies to the ladies, but Slim Shady is still as misogynistic as ever and there are numerous rhymes about domestic violence.  I feel like I'm in 7th grade listening to my portable CD player with big, shitty headphones.  There are some more mature tracks on the album, where they talk about the growing gap between the rich and poor...but I'm also totally feeling this song about taking lots and lots of drugs:

Anyway, now that Lil Wayne and Drake have announced that they too will be doing a duet album, it seems like this trend of rap cross-breeding will continue to produce sexy new sounds.  I'm totally OK with it.

-DMc, West Coast Correspondent

Friday, August 12

Spotify is the Tits.

I know I haven't posted any #SummerJams in a while, but that's about to change.

Imagine if iTunes and Pandora fucked and made a digital-music-streaming baby, which made it super easy to listen to almost any song or album by almost every artist you can think of, in a matter of seconds, any time you want, FOR FREE.  Wouldn't that be awesome?

Well they totally did it.  Spotify has been blowing up all over Europe for the past few years, and now it's available in the US.  If you don't have it yet, all you have to do go HERE, request an invite (which they send you basically immediately), and download the free version.

It will sync with your iTunes, making all of your current music library available while you're using it, and you will be able to search for whatever the hell you want to listen to at any given moment, stream it instantly, and create playlists with it.  You can access your Spotify account (and playlists!) from any computer that has the program installed (and since it's free, that pretty much means any computer).

There's also a version for $10/month that lets you access your playlists when your offline and, more importantly, on your mobile device.  I don't have the premium version yet, but if I ever get an iPhone, I will definitely upgrade.

The cherry on top?  You can sync to Facebook and share playlists.  As in, your friends will be able to see/access your playlists, you will be able to check out theirs, and you can collaborate on joint playlists.

So go get it.  To make it worth your while, I'll try to post more music recommendations over the next few days, which you'll be able to check out freely and easily now!

-DMc, West Coast Correspondent

The OTIS video explained

When Jay-Z and Kanye met up to discuss the OTIS video, it went like this:

Jay-Z: I think we should get a flag.
Kanye: Lets get the biggest flag ever and wear white shirts. Maybe sometimes I'll wear red pants.
Jay-Z: I think Aziz Ansari is funny.
Kanye: Lets get Aziz and put him in a blue suit. But not let him talk. He'll be like our bitch.
Jay-Z: Lets make the car a Maybach.
Kanye: Lets start the video with us cutting a Maybach apart and then driving around a cool Thunderdome version of a Maybach.
Jay-Z: Lets get Beyonce , my wife, in it.
Kanye: Lets get four white girls and put them in green in the backseat.
Jay-Z:   ...
Kanye: And the best part will be when I say "I write my curses in cursive."
Jay-Z: You get me.
Secret bff handshake

Or something like that. 

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Wednesday, August 10

FreeSol, getting Justin Timberlake Back into [Musical] Action

 Justin Timberlake keeps saying he hasn't quit the music biz, and I believe him. As soon as people start doubting he just does a feature on someone else's song and once again we're panting after him.

This time around we have Free Sol to thank for it. According to wikipedia, they are a progressive rap, rock, soul band from Memphis, same as Justin! He saw them perform live and signed them to his baby record company. Today JT tweeted this video for "Hoodies On, Hats Low" which he directed. He's in the video too; occasionally echoing the main guy, whisper singing, and stylishly walking, almost dancing. It's very clearly his asthetic though, from the coloring to the movement, once he's in the video it becomes a Justin video, because it's so in line with his style. Just the way the whole group walks forward and bounces on the "low," screams JT, in a very good way.

I can't stop listening to it. Give it a whirl:


p.s. in my opinion this song is way more fun than anything I've heard of Watch the Throne, which is all of it. 
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Sunday, August 7

Pandora is the Smartest Person I Know

     A few years ago av and I were at her dad's house and he was real excited about this new website he had just just learned about. He asked us what kind of music we had been listening to lately, which was hard, we were really just locked into either the Once soundtrack or Back to Black. Then av's dad got back to making an enourmous omelet after which we went to a museum to see a Gerald Murphy art show. Gerald Murphy and his wife Sara were American Expatriates who lived on the French Riviera at the beginning of the 1900s, the Murphy's are credited with inventing sunbathing.
     It was a few years before I used Pandora again. This past Winter I dove in. And Pandora is the Smartest Person I Know. I love the new songs it bring to me, how I can thumbs down songs that I disagree with, Pandora knows to not play any Chris Brown FUCK CHRIS BROWN, and how Pandora reminds you of songs from an album you actually have over in iTunes, just maybe it is track 11 and you never really hear it.
   I had never heard of Gorilla Zoe before.  My 6 foot 7 foot station was acquainted with him and made the introductions . The song was "I got it" and instantly I was reminded that Pandora is the Smartest Person I know. "I got It" reminds me of "In the club" or any rap song about how the rapper has IT which are usually the best rap songs.

    Pandora knew that I would dig "Mystifies Me" by Son Volt. I really like Ryan Adams. I just let Pandora run wild when I made a Ryan Adams station. I didn't want to anchor it in "Halloweenhead" or "Easy Plateau" because I trusted Pandora to do me right, which they did, obvs, Pandora is the Smartest Person I Know.
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Adam Levine's Greatest Hits

Adam Levine is a sex machine. Obviously.  I heard Harder to Breathe  in high school and have loved every song with Adam Levine since. Because every song with Adam Levine is at least awesome and most are amazing.

Kiwi is ridiculous. The whole album "It won't be soon before long" is WICKED FUCKING GOOD, Kiwi is the best song on it. Kiwi is the sexiest song I have ever heard.

 I Can't Lie from Hand's All Over is an almost perfect song. Right from the beginning Adam Levine comes in and immediately starts singing better than almost anyone else can. And then the song just keeps getting better.

Stereo Hearts is the kind of infectious immediately stuck in your head and you love every second of it song that Adam Levine is constantly a part of. When Adam Levine sings he just fucking kills it every time, which I appreciate. 

These are my favorite Adam Levine songs right now this morning at any other point it could have been any of the million singles from Songs about Jane or Hands all Over or even "Moves Like Jagger"  which is an awesome song even though it is a little silly and it got pulled into the downward spiral that was Christina Aguilera's wardrobe during The Voice, she looked awful all season.
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Friday, August 5

Giving money to poor people

The NY Times blog posted this yesterday and I thought it was worth sharing. The post highlights a new charitable donation organization, GiveDirectly, that allows donors to give money directly to the people they want to help. Rather than donating to an organization that will spend the money on projects that will take time to complete, if they get completed, while also covering overhead costs, thus cutting down on the money that actually ends up making a difference to the cause you want to help, with GiveDirectly 90% of your donation will be available to a person in need almost instantaneously.

Here's how GiveDirectly puts it, "GiveDirectly allows you to send money directly to the poor. We locate impoverished households in Kenya and then transfer donations electronically to their mobile phones. Our goal is simple: to provide the most efficient, transparent, and respectful way to give."

But what if they spend it on cigarettes or alcohol? They can spend the money that way. But research shows* that "temptation spending" doesn't go up in the households that receive funding. Mostly spend it on health fees, education costs, food, shelter, or starting a small business. The benefactors are interviewed prior to being set up to receive donations, so there is some screening going on to ensure that your money goes to someone who will use it well.  

So maybe you aren't into charitable donations at this point because you're up to your ears in student loans. That's fine. But someday after you've won the lottery, gone to Disney World, bought a few houses, and raced through a toy store with a shopping cart madly piling up everything you can reach because you're giving yourself that shopping spree you never won on Nickelodeon, you may want to give a little back. Here's one option. Or just buy some Toms. Whatever you're into. 

Junior I-Get-Tricked-Into-Helping-People Liaison

*I did not do this research and I haven't seen it. I read that in the article. Grain of salt added.
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Wednesday, August 3

You should be following @VeryShortStory


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Comic Con Lost Video.

Lost has been popping up in entertainment news quite a lot lately as the one year anniversary of  the series finale just passed. This video was played at ComicCon and was supposedly (not really at all though)  a deleted scene from the Season 1 Finale of Lost. If it had actually have been it would have totally ruined EVERYTHING. I haven't thought about Lost in a while. I think the end of the show had a lot more potential then it ended with  but there were tons of GREAT episodes that I entertained myself with over the course of many hours in college/post college. The Lost page on facebook still updates their status pretty regularly if you need a fix.

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this is for the ladies

This song was just shown to me last night, and it is, quite frankly, badass, unbelievably sexy, and filled with so much independent-women pride and power that I may have to start every day listening to it, at least for a while.
Thank you Beyonce, for reminding me in only 4 minutes and 51 seconds, that girls run the world. If I ever start to forget it again, I'll just hit replay.

Now I wanna go dance.

also, teachers at my school are the best.

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Tuesday, August 2

Pinterest is my creative distraction

Recently I've become obsessed with Pinterest, a self-described “virtual pinboard” and hub for all things visually-inspiring. Rather than racking up a long list of bookmarks, I “pin” images to my Pinterest boards when I find something interesting online. Recipes, DIY projects, artwork, quotes, landscapes, fashion—anything worth remembering. You can "follow" other Pinners' boards so you can see what your friends find exciting. I'm LOVING following Alice, Jill, KatieCaff and Lucy.

When I get stuck in my writing at work I often browse Pinterest for the sake of creative distraction. It’s inspiring to be presented with an array of fresh visual ideas whenever I want. And like all things social, my Pinterest experience would be much better if you joined. The site is still in closed beta (let me know if you want an invite!), but the interface is beautifully done and I expect big things in their future.

-Senior Pinterest Correspondent